National Drug Early Warning System (NDEWS) Weekly Briefing


2021 Q4 Report: Opioid-related 911 EMS responses per 10k population, October 2021  December 2021

In Q4 2021, 39,641 opioid-related 911 responses were recorded by for NDEWS Sentinel Sites. Of those 911 responses, a majority of persons were white (54%), and male (70%). Within our Sentinel Site Network, Kentucky had the highest rate of responses with 5.76 responses per 10k residents (2,573 total responses), followed by Florida with 4.82 per 10k residents (10,295 total responses) and Maine with 4.33 responses per 10k (580 total responses). View the full report here or click the image above.

Alert from NDEWS Web Monitoring team: Online mentions of Delta-8-THC

What was found? An explosive drug discussion trend surrounding Delta-8-THC has continued on Reddit throughout 2021.

To what does Delta-8-THC refer? Delta-8-THC is a psychoactive and intoxicating cannabinoid. It is an isomer of delta-9-THC with similar effects including euphoria; however, reportedly less potent. Delta-8-THC is prepared in edibles, tinctures, and other forms, and is currently promoted by many as a therapeutic to treat anxiety, depression, and pain. Notably, the content, purity, and delta-9-THC content of delta-8-THC products labeled as delta-8-THC vary due to lack of regulation in the drug's manufacturing.

How is it being discussed? Delta-8-THC is frequently discussed as an alternative to delta-9-THC. Delta-8-THC is referred to as having lower or similar potency to delta-9-THC. While drug sourcing discussion is generally banned by Subreddit moderators, information for sourcing of delta-8-THC is frequently shared on Reddit.

Drug Terms: Delta-8, Delta 8, Delta8, Δ8, D8, Δ8-THC, Δ-8-THC.

Methodological Note: Data was collected and analyzed by the NDEWS Web Monitoring Team, led by Dr. Elan Barenholtz and PhD candidate Paul Morris of the Machine Perception and Cognitive Robotocs (MPCR) Lab at Florida Atlantic University. Metrics are based on word counts derived from algorithmic monitoring of ~80 drug-oriented Subreddits. No personally identifiable or post-specific information is incorporated in this monitoring process. For more methodological details, see our recent publication.

New Substances Survey

Is Delta-8 being used in your area?


NDEWS Virtual HealthStreet

Through NDEWS, Virtual HealthStreet will extend UF HealthStreet’s tradition of excellence in providing quality data and empirically driven policy change, with a new focus on drug use. A national expert panel of people with histories of drug use will be recruited to participate in periodic special topic surveys specifically aimed at garnering a better understanding of emerging drug trends across the US. We aim to recruit 26,000 individuals to participate in the study over a 3-year period. Please do not hesitate to share this with those who may be interested in participating. Click here to view the survey.

If you have any questions about Virtual HealthStreet, please contact Dr. Catherine Striley at (352) 273-5359 or


NPS Discovery year in review 2021

NPS Discovery published their 2021 year in review report this week. This report describes total count figures of newly reported novel psychoactive substances (NPS) in the United States, including NPS detected in forensic samples, and within examined sample populations. Read the full report here.


Exploring Televend, an innovative combination of cryptomarket and messaging app technologies for trading prohibited drugs

The former digital drug market Televend used an innovative combination of cryptomarket and messaging app technologies for trading prohibited drugs. A new study provided an initial characterization of the market through web-scraping and an examination of drug buyers from the Global Drugs Survey. Results showed that most Televend buyers reported buying cannabis, then cocaine, MDMA, and LSD. Compared to those who used other darknet markets, those who used the Televend market had similar demographic and drug use characteristics. Read the full study here


White House announces $3 million for public health and public safety partnerships across the country working to prevent overdoses

The Office of National Drug Control Policy, in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has announced $3 million in funding through the Combating Overdose Through Community-Level Intervention (COCLI) initiative for public health and public safety partnerships across the country. Read the full press release here.

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